Rekindle the Magic of the Pony and Autobot Friendship!
IDW recently announced another delightful, magical comic book mashup of Hasbro classic toy properties with My Little Pony / Transformers II, a four-part monthly miniseries appearing on comic book shelves this April
While using a modified Spacebridge to bring magic to Cybertron, the Decepticons end up unleashing a more powerful evil from Equestria than they ever could’ve imagined. Two worlds collide in the return of this hit crossover concept, with a first issue by writers James Asmus and Sam Maggs, and artists Jack Lawrence and Casey W. Coller!
“I can’t wait to jump back into this world of magical friendships that really is More than Meets the Eye,” says Maggs in a recent IDW press release. “It’s such a blast coming up with the most fun (and downright weird) pairings of ponies and ‘bots, and I think fans of both series are going to be surprised at what’s we’ve got for them this second time around!”
“The first crossover was about as much fun as I’ve had in my writing career,” says Asmus. “I am hugely delighted that we’re not only doing a follow up, but getting to flip the script. In the first series, we got to tell really charming and fun stories by tossing the Autobots and Decepticons into the colorful, magical world of Equestria. But now, dragging dark magic and friendly ponies into the sci-fi world of Cybertron lets us play with brand new tones, toys, and team-ups!”
Editor Megan Brown says, “We are so excited to work with some amazingly talented writers and artists to bring this marvelous mashup back to comic stores! Just like the previous volume, many creators are contributing stories that are going to bring our favorite ponies to Cybertron and beyond, including returning writers James Asmus, Sam Maggs, Ian Flynn, and returning artists Jack Lawrence, Casey W. Coller, Priscilla Tramontano, and Tony Fleecs — all joined by some new, exciting faces! The creators on this series are exceptional, able to bridge the gap between Autobot and pony to make a colorful, vibrant world. We’re thrilled for everyone (and everypony!) to see what we have in store!”
My Little Pony / Transformers II #1 will be available with multiple cover variants including Cover A by Tony Fleecs, Cover B by Bethany McGuire-Smith, and two Retailer Incentive editions featuring art by Jon Gray and Anna Malkova, respectively.
My Little Pony / Transformers II #1 will arrive this April in print at comic book stores, and digitally through popular apps this April, 2021.
Hasbro Inc. and IDW Publishing has crossed over once again, to bring an odd crossing of the most iconic magical cartoon ponies and transforming warrior robots of all time.
That’s right, My Little Pony / Transformers is rolling out to comic stores this May, as four-issue mini series. Both franchises are owned by Hasbro, to official bring them together under the licensing comics publisher was likely smooth.
But, coherently bringing all together in a some story requires some reputable comics talent. So Little Pony / Transformers assembles an all-star team of comic creators for this mind-blowing series to tell its tale: writers James Asmus, Ian Flynn, and Sam Maggs, and artists Casey W. Coller, Jack Lawrence, Sara Pitre-Durocher, Priscilla Tramontano, and Tony Fleecs (who also provides cover artwork for the entirety of the series).
So what’s the story? Well…,
The scheming Queen Chrysalis casts a spell in search of changeling allies, but accidentally interferes with a distant Cybertronian Spacebridge… and brings the Autobots and Decepticons to Equestria! As the dust settles, it’s up to Twilight Sparkle, Optimus Prime, and others to overcome the menace of malevolent magic and machinery!
“The writing I’ve gotten to do individually for My Little Pony and Transformers have already proven to be some of the most fun I’ve had in my career, so it’s pure joy to play them off each other,” says Asmus in a recent press release. “We’re making a wild mash-up unlike anything else in your comic collection. You basically owe it to yourself and your future happiness to get a copy!”
“It’s been a delightful challenge finding common threads between the ponies and bots. It’s certainly a fun and unique opportunity,” says Flynn. “I hope fans of both franchises can come together and enjoy this.”
“My Little Pony and Transformers are two of my all-time favorite universes. Having written for them both previously, the idea of bringing the citizens of Equestria and Cybertron together is incredibly exciting,” says Maggs.
Here are some other covers to watch out for. Contact you comics dealer for more info, and secure a copy of this magical crossover.
In recognition of Women’s History Month, IDW Publishing and Hasbro Inc. have teamed up to create Synergy: A Hasbro Creators Showcase, a 48-page celebration anthology of fan-favorite creators and new talent working with many of the most beloved Hasbro characters.
The Synergy anthology features five brand-new stories: autobiographical works written by Mairghread Scott (drawn by Sara Pitre-Durocher, reuniting the creative team behind the Transformers: Till All Are One series) and Katie Cook (of the hit My Little Pony comic), plus original tales inspired by G.I. Joe, Transformers, and Jem and the Holograms.
Mairghread Scott says, “Transformers is a brand that shaped both my childhood and adult life. I’m grateful for the chance to talk about what these amazing robots have meant to me, and others, over the years.”
Katie Cook says, “Hasbro was such an integral part of my upbringing. My Little Pony inspired a youth full of pastel imaginings and became a huge part of my cartooning career as I got the chance to make those imaginings real. I bonded with childhood friends over ponies in the 1980s, and as an adult, I crafted stories for My Little Pony alongside creators who have become the friends of a lifetime.”
In addition to storytelling, Synergy: A Hasbro Creators Showcase includes four new pin-ups, as well as a gallery of thirteen fabulous images from the IDW archives – dynamic illustrations that celebrate the women who have already made, or will soon make, an impact on the world of Hasbro for many years to come.
Synergy editor Megan Brown says, “This is a great coming together of creative talent and an amazing showcase for a host of wonderful authors, artists, and colorists — both old and new. I am beyond thrilled to be editing this compilation, and to be given the chance to highlight the amazing work of women in the comics industry.”
For information on how to secure copies of Synergy: A Hasbro Creators Showcase, please contact your local comic shop or visit http://www.comicshoplocator.com to find a store near you.
IDW Publishing recently announced a Transformers series coming in March 2019! This time deep into the past, exploring the very moment when a glorious, peaceful Cybertron begins its downward spiral into chaos.
Available twice monthly, IDW’s Transformers comic will be written by Brian Ruckley, author of the Godless World fantasy trilogy, and illustrated by Angel Hernandez (Star Trek: Discovery – Succession) and Ron Joseph (Micronauts: Wrath of Karza).
In this new Transformers comic, IDW will explore Cybertron in ways never seen by audiences before – delving into an idyllic society, peaceful for thousands of years, as it faces the most momentous event in its history: the mysterious end of a single life. Through the eyes of young Bumblebee and his friends, fans will witness conspiracies forming, harmony giving way to conflict, and the very fabric of Cybertronian civilization tearing itself apart.
“Bringing Transformers fans this story is a real privilege,” says Brian Ruckley. “But just as important, it’s an amazing opportunity for new readers to discover and explore one of the biggest universes – and one of the best casts of characters – that science fiction has to offer, and to get in right at the start of a truly epic saga.”
Ron Joseph says, “In my youth, I devoured everything Transformers – toys, comics, the cartoon, the movie – with a Unicron-like hunger. ‘Robots in Disguise’ dominated my every waking moment. To join IDW’s creative team for the launch of a Transformers comic is staggering, and easily one of the greatest moments of my life.”
“We are eager to begin this new chapter in Transformers storytelling,” says Michael Kelly, Hasbro’s Vice President of Global Publishing. “We are excited to begin a tale that will be accessible and appealing to readers unfamiliar with Transformers lore, while still providing the depth and drama that our long-time fans expect. It’s a big responsibility, but we’ve got the right team and the right characters to do it.”
The debut issue of this new Transformers comic will be available with multiple cover variants, by artists Gabriel Rodriguez, Angel Hernandez, Casey W. Coller, and Freddie E. Williams II. Issue #2, also available in March, will feature covers by Nelson Daniel, Ron Joseph, and Jeffrey Veregge.
For information on how to secure copies of IDW’s new biweekly Transformers series, please contact your local comic shop or visit http://www.comicshoplocator.com to find a store near you.
With hailing frequencies open, there is something more than meets the eye to this final frontier. The classic crew of the USS Enterprise will meet the first classic generation of Transformers in Star Trek vs. Transformers.
From IDW comics publishers, this crossover will indeed happen. Here are further details from a recent press release:
The starship Enterprise finds there’s more to the final frontier when Kirk and his crew come face-to-face with the strangest life forms of all: the shape-changing robots of Cybertron! Prepare to beam up and roll out this September with Star Trek vs. Transformers, a four-issue comic book crossover that is more than meets the eye and is inspired by the continuities of two iconic cartoon shows: Star Trek: The Animated Series (1973) and The Transformers (1984).
Two of the most prolific Transformers and Star Trek comic book writers — John Barber and Mike Johnson — team with artist Philip Murphy and colorist Leonardo Ito to tell the story that fans have demanded for decades. At the edge of Klingon space, the Enterprise answers a distress call, discovering a dilithium mine under siege by jets and helicopters of vintage 20th Century design. When a red, flat-nosed truck rolls in to save the day, the no-holds barred Saturday morning mash-up truly begins!
Co-writer Mike Johnson, whose vast Star Trek comic book credits include the acclaimed Countdown and Star Trek / Green Lantern storylines, says, “This is a crossover several decades in the making, and we could not be more thrilled to bring it to fans! John and I are having a blast writing the first meeting of Starfleet and Cybertronians, and Phil is the perfect artist to bring these two franchises together on the page.”
“The funny thing is, even though I’m the Transformers guy on this comic (I’ve written a lot of Transformers comics, after all), I’ve always been a huge Star Trek fan, ever since I was a kid,” says John Barber, co-writer and IDW’s newly-minted Editor-in-Chief. “When I was in fifth grade, I remember my teacher joking at the end of the year that maybe someday I’d wind up writing Star Trek… and it’s a thrill to finally get to!”
Philip Murphy, whose IDW credits include The Powerpuff Girls and Star Wars Adventures, says, “This is definitely a dream-come-true project for me. It’s my first time getting to draw Transformers and Star Trek. Not only am I a huge Trek fan, but I was born in the ’80s so I grew up in the golden era of Saturday morning cartoons – and The Transformers was definitely on the top of my list! This comic really means something special to me.”
Chase Marotz, associate editor, says, “Star Trek vs. Transformers is finally giving us the chance to combine two of our most prominent licenses in a style that will delight both fans of the original animated series and new readers. David Mariotte and I are having a great time editing it and we can’t wait until the fans get to see it for themselves.”
Captain’s Note: Both franchises have played an important role in science fiction, though to a very different degree. Star Trek has went beyond its universe as Captain Kirk has already met the X-Men, Planet of the Apes, Green Lantern, and more. The Transformers have encountered GI.Joe and the Avengers. I am not sure how this story here will play out logically, but it will an interesting (and hopefully good) one.
Look forward to Star Trek vs. Transformers #1, this September in comic book retail stores everywhere.
Published by: IDW Comics Publish Date: June 14, 2017
Notes: Spinoff series from the Transformers IDW series
“Jazz confronts his past—and the Autobot’s future—in front of millions of television viewers. But will he make the people of Earth understand Optimus Prime’s mission… or turn against it?”
Personal Thoughts (minor spoilers):
As an old school Transformers fan, I have a nostalgic gravitation towards the classical representations. Such robots then appeared more human, with a believable feel to their strange existence; at least by appearance and weird Earth acquired lingo. The later incarnations either appeared less serious, too digital looking, or just ugly in a world full of explosions and over-melodramatics.
Still, my favorite Transformers of the first generation is Jazz; the good Autobot jive-talking streetwise robot capable of transforming into a Porsche. I saw this cover of my old childhood friend with his classical look and dived in. I have not read earlier issues or this new Optimus Prime series, or the acclaimed recent Transformers series of the recent years.
So here in this story, contains several separate but connected ongoing dramas relating to recent events within the IDW Transformers universe. Jazz is foremost, who is granted a television interview arranged with humans. Then we have a flashback to the days of Cybertron past, where Optimus Prime (Orion Pax back then) and Jetfire (an eventual turncoat in the bitter war between Autobots and Decepticons). Then some sequences to the current days with other Transformers exchanging thoughts and emotions.
Such is an interesting issue, not relying on action or trash talking; something I have come to associate the franchise with. The issue is mostly focused on the more humanlike aspects of the Transformers, with their philosophies on various social topics and personal relationships. Much of that comes back to the Jazz side story, where he talks about his musical upbringing and his appreciation for Earth music. He brings the story to a more recent incident, where he apparently killed a police officer while defending a young African-American youth. His difficulties in dealing with the American media frustrate him, and the complete story here is lost (at least to this reader just jumping in).
Such is too bad, as wanted more on Jazz’s perspective of Earth culture and social problems, being adjusted well to the urban culture (transforming into a Porsche helps). Still, I would love to have an entire series of just Jazz, delving more into the human experience as a refugee alien robot war veteran.
Meanwhile, the other stories had an interesting aspect to them, further than I would expect robots based on toys originally marketed to children. There is so much with these panels I found interesting, as far as the contrast in the past and present history of warring robots from a faraway planet go. Still, there are details I find amusing, like this bar seen.
I love how all the wings, engines, boosters, and other machine parts of them are just everyday attire. There is a fascination to the weirdness, especially going back to the classic look, appearing somewhat natural in everyday living. Also interesting, are the social positions statuses being scientists and police officers lost in Cybertronian history, indicating more of its “normal” non-war times. Then, we fast forward to a future, where the humans whose difficult interactions with Jazz, may bring about the negative kind of change in his Earthen views.
I am a little curious in reading more of this series, especially if this good writing and solid art style carry on. The coloring is fantastic as well, mixing the vibrancy well of the colorful robots with the cold, metal Cybertron world, and green, organic planet Earth. My only complaint is the lack of the Autobot leader Optimus Prime in this particular issue, who barely has any impact or presence in the overall issue.
Overall, a great issue with a good jumping-on point for those classic Transformers fans, or those wanting more drama in their fighting robot interactions. I may look into the recent trade paperbacks, though I am not sure of which. I welcome any suggestions.
IDW Publishing recently announced its special variant cover theme for its comic books in the the July 2017 month, featuring the awesome art of Tom Whalen upon its many licensed characters in their popular monthly titles.
Here they are…
All are scheduled for release in July, but likely in limited quantities. Consult your local comic book retailer for more order info.
Last week was a good week for fresh reads, with a little something for everyone.
Below are my further notes on the following books, mostly released last week (with minor spoilers). Read on!!!
RECENT COMICS, RELEASED 3/29/2017:
The Old Guard #2 (Image Comics) by Greg Rucka, Leandro Fernandez
“PART TWO The Old Guard is revealed. A new immortal is discovered. Things go sideways, fast.”
I felt astounded by the inside art, panel compositions for this second issue. I think there Greg Rucka does well with storytelling in relation to the artist working along with (especially on Detective Comics Batwoman arc, Gotham Central, Queen and Country, Lazerus). The storytelling is leaps ahead of the first issue, where we learn more about the immortal soldiers in past war flashbacks and them coming together. In the present, the men seem almost lost in their trapped state, taking direction from their female commander (Andy). Then we meet Nile, another female immortal new to the game. There is a quick bond, leading to a fearful end of which is shocking and presents an interesting direction for the series.
Plague #1 (AAM/Markosia) by Dennis Fallon, Jason Palmatier, Zachary Brunner
“When the King of the Fey dies from the Black Plague, his angry young heir, Twylyth Tegg, vows to save his people by any means necessary. That same night, we meet our hero, Robb Aubert, a fearful friar of the Jedburgh Forest who has lost his faith and fellow friars to the dreaded plague. Driven by a mysterious note from the German Bishop of Hildesheim, Friar Robb is about to catch the last boat leaving the English Isles for the mainland when he crosses paths with an injured English Fairy – Danann Atreyu – a fey girl who has just lost her family to the infamous Black Cross, the Warbishop Jean De Moray. But Moray is more than just a bloodthirsty tyrant, he’s a man haunted by the long-ago death of this baby brother and at war with himself over all he’s done in the name of God since. His dreaded Dyrewolves track Danann’s blood-trail to the gates of the abbey where Friar Robb has unwittingly taken her in. It seems Robb is harboring a magical creature – a crime punishable by death.”
Plague brings us the best of classical fantasy escapism mixed with the worst of medieval era real life horrors. The awesome art, with a mix of pencils, earthy tones and sudden touches of fairy magic feel very inviting. But reading throughout, there is an eclipse of darkness leading to some ghastly violence and the sad realism that mirrored the times that inspired this hybrid fantasy world. There is a repeated theme of personal loss of loved ones under cruel circumstances, where both hero and villain deal with such in their personal way. Then, we have a fairy creature caught in the middle, who also suffered the loss of loved ones. This first issue is a gripping read, though it may feel a bit heavier to those who identify more so with the characters within.
Rough Riders: Riders of the Storm #2 (Aftershock) by Patrick Glass, Patrick Oliffe
“Madman Leon Czolgosz has just shot President McKinley at the 1901 World’s Fair. As the nation looks to Vice President Theodore Roosevelt for guidance, he calls upon his fellow ROUGH RIDERS to help him investigate the assassination attempt. As they dig deeper they unearth a WORLDWIDE CONSPIRACY that not only threatens the fabric of our society, but also pits the Rough Riders against some of history’s most famous characters. Join this secret adventure of the greatest band of heroes that the world never knew.”
Rough Riders remains a personal guilty pleasure, with this escalated mix of cheesy action and historical fan fiction. For this issue, there is a lot more interaction between the heroes and what makes them tick. Aside from that Roosevelt is a bit more of a detective in this issue, whose actions carry the story in a more logical direction. Meanwhile, Annie is a very casual badass with some very hell yeah moments. Jack Johnson is a good muscle though I wish more involvement with his character. Edison, I feel has grear potential in an eventual villain to this overall story. I like the development in the casual pacing of Rough Riders, of which I am enjoying and hoping it will be around for a while.
Jughead: The Hunger #1 (Archie) by Frank Tieri, Michael Walsh
“BRAND NEW ONE-SHOT SPECIAL! Jughead Jones has always had an insatiable appetite… but what if his hunger came from a sinister place? When a murderous menace is on the prowl, taking the lives of some of the most well-known and esteemed inhabitants of Riverdale, Jughead and his family’s dark legacy comes to light. Join writer Frank Tieri (Wolverine) and artist Michael Walsh (Secret Avengers) for this horrifying one-shot for TEEN+ readers.”
Not confused with the award-winning series, Afterlife with Archie; Jughead: The Hunger has a similar visual tone and style involving supernatural horror. Yet here, there is a closer draw to its campy, humorous feel to the comics originally based from, but without the cartoonish caricatures. The violence and PG-13 situations are present, and the visuals are very dark, drawing closer to the classic EC horror classics. The premise is simple. Jughead hungers for more than hamburgers, as his nature becomes more lupine. What develops through is a fun treat for horror readers and fans fo Archie Comics, in whatever bizarre form they transform.
Transformers vs. G.I. Joe: The Movie #1 (IDW) by Tom Scioli
“Imagine a world where the greatest comic book crossover of all time inspires a movie adaptation… and that movie adaptation inspires its own comic book! Visionary writer-artist Tom Scioli returns to the weird world of Transformers vs. G.I. Joe and brings an even weirder twist to this new story: what would the comic book adaptation of the movie version of the comic book look like? It’s time to find out in the most epic, scintillating, off-the-wall, exciting comic of 2017!”
Just when I thought the surreal oddity that was the recent Transformers Vs. G.I. Joe series ended, then came this surprise issue. And once again, something only for the purest, nostalgia-loving fans of the cartoons that popularized, thinking deep into whatever philosophical tones that could come from them. Throughout, we get the usual fan-service to a high degree, with some meta-commentary thrown in. This being my favorite moment:
So yeah, do enjoy for whatever one may take from this issue, for which there is much. Even with the story over, there continue some goofy extras. An overall oddity, that will be appreciated much like the franchise, in time.
Animosity #6 (Aftershock) by Marguerite Bennett, Rafael De LaTorre
“When Jesse is abducted by humans, Sandor, her faithful and protective Bloodhound, will cut a swath of blood and bone through everything that stands in his path to find and rescue his beloved friend.”
Another great issue, though I think for the wrong reasons. I savor the drama in this book to a higher emotional state than intended for the continuous absurd premise of the series. I really enjoyed the developing suspense and horror to of the sudden reveal of the “dragon,” being a truly horrible beast, and in ways worse than a dragon. Then we have Jessie, who is directly the opposite, though she resorts to the desperate surprising measure of survival while in captivity. Her friends, I also fear towards any sudden horrible end that remains possible with every possible page turn. Sanders, remaining the most fearful, and I think will eventually come. Overall, a short felt victory of good vs.evil, until we get to the end…very chilling.
That’s all until next time. Did we miss any worthwhile reads on the latest shelves? Do you have further thoughts on the books covered here? Leave a comment below!
We love our comic books, as many look forward to the latest from the recent Wednesday new shelves, as new single issues are available. Lately, I scoped out some of the latest from frequent reads and with some new freshness added in. Below, are those recent comics highlights with short reviews, all worth a good look as we have a mix of horror, nostalgia, action, and heavy science fiction..
NEW COMICS THIS WEEK:
Cinema Purgatorio (Avatar), by Alan Moore, Kevin O’Neill, Garth Ennis, Keiron Gillen, Max Brooks, and many more.
There are 5 great tales from great writers with matching artists, worth reading. The first and most fitting for the cover is Alan Moore’s work with Kevin O’Neill; always magical and works just as well in black and white as they do in their League of Extraordinary Gentlemen series. Keiron Gillen and Ignacio Calero’s tale is best understood by gamers, but may confuse others. The other work is worthwhile for anyone, but more cheeky than epic or emotional to some sort. The book is worth its price and the best so far out of this series.
GI Joe vs Transformers #13 (IDW), by John Barber and Tom Scioli
Here, is the final issue of this bonkers fan-serviced nostalgia fest. Everything ends on many bangs with fantastic art, old comic textures, and over-the-top twists and takes on familiar characters. Such is enjoyable and not taken seriously by fans of either, with some hilarious and bizarre moments throughout. John Barber and Tom Scioli has been a real treat for those who like their comics fun. Hopefully, the IDW will recognize this underrated work and someday put the series in a nice collected hardbound volume.
Hillbilly #1 (Albatross), by Eric Powell
I loved this first issue, as we make most of the time for a truly dark and twisted origin story to protagonist, a most interesting character worthy of a horror fandom. Much of the story is dark, with a creepy fairy tale vibe patched in. Hillbilly is different and the art is awesome. The greyish tones and moody coloring draws the reader deep into this world of creepy witches and backwoods life. I look forward to the next issue.
Star Wars: Darth Vader #22 (Marvel) by Keiron Gillen and Salvador Larroca
So far as the Marvel Star Wars comics have gone, the Darth Vader series is the most interesting and worthwhile. It’s not just for its main star, but the interesting cast of characters introduced exclusively for this series. We know our favorite Sith Lord will survive but what of the cast? Also, we get a bigger picture of other forces besides the Rebellion and Empire at work, and where Darth Vader fits in. In this issue though, Vader takes on a cybernetic Rancor beast and its scientist who are an interesting match to the Sith Lord. But, sadly not a challenge towards the end of the issue. I am hoping for bigger, more complex situations as the series continues.
Spectrum #1 (Con Man Comics), by Alan Tudyk, PJ Haarsma, Sarah Stone
For this looking for a new space opera in sequential art form, than this new series starts off well. However, the prior #0 issue out in print and cheap through online apps sets the stage better. The first issue follows up with needed info, leaving new readers hooked by its first issue presumption, perhaps a little confused. Even with both issues, there is a lot of world-building and backdrop to sort out. The main characters are interesting and I love the name Cash Wayne. Overall, the writing, artwork and beautiful colorplay makes this a great, fun new book for fans of action-driven sci-fi.
Crytocracy #1 (Dark Horse), by Van Jensen and Pete Woods
A bit of everything one could want in some bizarre paranormal science fiction, except the melodramatic seriousness one gets from X-Files. Think Men in Black with all its weirdness and humor. However, much is very over the top with unbalance pacing. Such has a lot of fun moments with great coloring and mood-enducing art. But the story is sporadic and feels a bit disjointed. The concepts and ideas are plenty, but a bit too much for a first issue introduction. I didn’t get the main character, of the lack thereof. Still, no regrets in reading as I enjoyed many parts, just not the whole.
That’s all until next time. Did we miss anything on the shelves? Do you have thoughts to add on the books covered here? Leave a comment below!
Orion T – SW chief writer and appreciater of great comic books and all related wonderful things.